Sunday, July 15, 2007

Handicapping the Presidential Race - Republicans

The implosion of the McCain campaign is a perfect time to revisit the Presidential races, now only 16 months away. As before, I'll be offering my odds and, for comparison, in red the odds calculated by the Intrade Trading Exchange.

Fred Thompson (actor-TN) 3 to 1 (2 to 1)
Running a stealth campaign is an interesting tactic for an actor. Fred apparently believes his best chance is to be a figment of rabid Republican imaginations. Conversely, that means he thinks his chances worsen as people get to know him. So, we have the spectacle of a candidate trying to not appear in public and trying not to express any policy positions. There hasn't been a successful "front porch" presidential campaign in well over a century but Fred is giving it a go. Of course, he may just be auditioning for the title role in a remake of "The Invisible Man."

To Be Announced - 6 to 1
With the Republican field wide and shallow, I continue to believe that some heretofore unknown candidate will emerge and field a strong campaign. What with the Republican delegation to Congress being what it is, he will probably be another actor. Tom Selleck, anyone?

Mitt Romney (former gov-MA) - 8 to 1 (5 to 1)
Beginning to give off Stepford Candidate vibes. When I first started looking at the campaigns back in December I thought he had the legs for the race. Now, it mostly looks like squeaky wheels. A telling sign that his campaign is ebbing is that no one cares he is a Mormon any longer.

Rudy Giulianitm (former mayor of New York) - 10 to 1 (2 to 1)
Still polling well, although now in a tie with Fredo. Still don't know why. Rudy lives and dies on the fear of terrorism. His success will depend upon whether those Republican voters hiding under their bedsheets from the boogeyman will have the courage to crawl out long enough to vote.

Mike Huckabee (gov-AR) - 35 to 1 (80 to 1)
Smarter than his hillbilly image. Keep an eye on this boy.

Ron Paul (congressman-TX) - 40 to 1 (35 to 1)
The libertarian who believes that 9/11 was a government hoax. Ranks surprisingly high on Intrade.

Tom Tancredo (rep-CO) - 100 to 1 (300 to 1)
The only Republican to show up at the NAACP sponsored debate forum. This just shows how out of touch he is with his party.

St. John McCain (Sen-AZ) - 300 to 1 (25 to 1)
The betting money shows his collapse better than the polling numbers. Back in May he was ranked second to Giuliani on Intrade, now he is barely ahead of Ron Paul. Pissing away his money as he did makes one of his few positives, fiscal restraint, into a joke. McCain is talking about a comeback but you need to be young and mostly unknown to earn a second chance. Old warhorses who trip up this badly just get sent to the glue factory. I once thought his best chance at being president was as a third-party candidate but Mike Bloomberg has even stolen that chance away from him.

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